I have noticed that almost all Mikvas are built into the ground (either as a basement or on the first floor). Why is that? I have heard that it could be an ease-of-use issue (one doesn't have to climb stairs), but if that was true, then there should be the same climb from a basement as the climb from the first floor?

  • 2
    Perhaps for the same reason pools and hot tubs are usually on a ground floor. They're heavy and would need more building support
    – HodofHod
    Oct 23, 2011 at 22:36

3 Answers 3


They aren't all built near the ground - for example the mens mikvah where I live is on the second floor.

However they frequently build them on the ground simply because water is extremely heavy, and building it higher up requires special building reinforcement - the building would basically have to be built specifically to be a mikvah, and could not be renovated to a mikvah since it wouldn't be strong enough.

  • I'm not sure that you can build a Kosher Mikva on the 2nd floor; bringing a proof from a mens' Mikva is no proof, since a mens' Mikva does not need to be Kosher. Aug 9, 2012 at 8:40
  • @DannySchoemann It's Bor Al Gabei Bor if that matters to you, and it's not a large mikvah.
    – Ariel
    Aug 9, 2012 at 8:48
  • Interesting. But still, as long as it is a "mens' Mikva" it may not really be Kosher. E.g. you would want to ask your LOR before using it as a Keilim Mikva for dipping new dishes. Aug 9, 2012 at 10:01
  • @DannySchoemann I've seen people dip dishes there, and considering the LOR built it, it would be pretty insulting to imply to him that it's not kosher. And anyway, for what reason do you think it's not kosher? Just because it's not on the ground?
    – Ariel
    Aug 9, 2012 at 10:04
  • As I said: "I'm not sure that you can build a Kosher Mikva on the 2nd floor". Maybe you can, maybe you can't. Nobody on this thread has provided proof either way. And unless you actually ask the LOR-builder if it's Kosher, you won't know - since "mens' mikva" does not imply "Kosher for Torah-requirement" even if lots of people think so. Aug 9, 2012 at 10:10

The standard design for a contemporary mikva has it fed by a system of gutters that channel rainwater directly into the mikva, without any elbows or other feature that could temporarily "hold" the water.

I'd figure this design would be simplified with a ground-level mikva.


Most swimming pools are also usually built into the ground. It seems that would be the easiest way for people to use them.

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